Tag Archives: John Carter

2012 Movie Preview: Sci-Fi/Fantasy (Part 2)

We’re on to the second day of the 2012 movie preview, and this is the second half of my anticipated sci-fi/fantasy flicks. Tomorrow, I’ll be covering the upcoming action blockbusters that I think look promising.

Jack the Giant Killer (June 15)

I can’t say the premise interests me too much (how many fairytale movies do we need in one year?) However, I am very interested to see how Nicholas Hoult will do in his first big leading role. Also, Bryan Singer is a capable blockbuster director (X-Men 1&2), and Ewan McGregor, Stanley Tucci, and Bill Nighy are also in the movie.

John Carter (March 9)

A CGI-heavy Disney action film wouldn’t usually excite me too much, but there are a few things that John Carter may have working in its favour. The first is its star, Taylor Kitsch. Anyone who watches Friday Night Lights knows all about Kitsch’s charisma, so I’m very interested to see how he’ll do with his own film. Also, this is director Andrew Stanton’s first live action film after helming Pixar projects like Finding Nemo and Wall-E, and he seems to have brought the visual style from those films to this one. I remain cautiously optimistic.

Looper (September 28)

2012 seems to be the year of great director/actor teams reuniting. Here, we get director Rian Johnson and actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt who last teamed up for 2005’s compelling teen noir, Brick. The scope is a little bigger this time (they even got Bruce Willis and Emily Blunt!), but I love the idea of Johnson taking on a crazy sci-fi action film.

Prometheus (June 8)

I’m not a big horror movie fan, but this Ridley Scott prequel (?) to Alien has me very interested because of its great cast. Guy Pearce and Michael Fassbender are two of my favourite working actors, and I like Charlize Theron, Patrick Wilson, Idris Elba, and Noomi Rapace quite a bit, too. Having Lost writer Damon Lindeloff behind the screenplay can’t hurt, either.

Total Recall (August 3)

Do we need another Total Recall? Absolutely not. But Colin Farrell has proven to be a viable action hero, and with John Cho, Bryan Cranston and Bill Nighy in the supporting cast (along with the less-interesting Kate Beckinsale and Jessica Biel), it might be worth a try.

World War Z (December 21)

This Brad Pitt zombie vehicle based on the hugely popular book of the same name is just poised to be a Christmas hit. I’m really not sure if this will work, but I’m certainly interested to see them try. Between this and Warm Bodies, it seems like 2012 is the year of the zombie.

Trailer Alert: Jude Law Edition

A number of high-profile trailers have been released in the past few days, so it seemed like a fitting time for rundown of what we can expect to see in the coming months. That is, a lot of Jude Law.

Contagion

Release Date: September 9, 2011

Contagion looks a bit different from what I expected. I thought it would be more of a contained story about the scientists trying to stop the disease. But I am totally down for this sweeping, borderline-apocalyptic thriller. Aside from what seems to be a pretty major spoiler about a character death (I’m sure it happens early in the film, but still), I really like the trailer. I’m not a big Soderbergh fan, but this might be the film that turns it around for me. Law and Damon seem to be going “big” with their performances, but I imagine that will fit better in context. And Hawkes looks great, even just from his one line in the trailer. This looks like a good ol’ fashioned thriller with a top-notch cast, and that exactly what I want it to be.

Hugo

Release Date: November 23, 2011

Not to be a complete Negative Nancy, but I can’t help but think that this looks lame. Like, really lame. I know it’s based on a kid’s book and is largely aimed at kids, but I was expecting more from a Scorsese film. Not all of his films have to be The Departed, but I thought this would have a little more heft to it. Instead, it seems overly focused on the special effects, which seem copious. Though I was invested at first (partly thanks to Jude Law’s kindly presence), the trailer quickly became a numbing, frenzied mess of CGI. A little “whimsy” goes a long way for me in movies. And though I normally like Sascha Baron Cohen, his character is already annoying me. It looks like a poor man’s Harry Potter. But hopefully Hugo is better than the trailer looks.

Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows

Release Date: December 16, 2011

Even though Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law are two of my favourite actors, I was a bit underwhelmed with the first Sherlock Holmes movie. It wasn’t bad, but it just wasn’t that…good, either. And it looks like more of the same for the sequel. The trailer doesn’t offer much that is new or interesting (but man, it could sure use some more super slo-mo, right?). I don’t know, it looks okay, I guess, but I just don’t have much to say about it. And are we really reusing the exact same joke again at the end of the trailer? Between this and The Hangover II I’m getting some serious 2009 film-related amnesia this year.

John Carter

Release Date: March 9, 2012

There are a lot of things that I like about Friday Night Lights. But if I had to pick the most watchable aspect of the show, it would definitely be Taylor Kitsch as the brooding, oddly multifaceted ne’er-do-well, Tim Riggins. So it’s fun to see him get a leading role in The Prince of Persia John Carter. That said, I have no idea what to make of this movie. The trailer was interesting, in a bizarre, hard-to-follow kind of way. IMDB tells me the following: “Civil War vet John Carter is transplanted to Mars, where he discovers a lush, wildly diverse planet whose main inhabitants are 12-foot tall green barbarians.” It also tells me that Samantha Morton, Bryan Cranston, Thomas Hayden Chuch, Mark Strong (gee, do you think he’s playing a villain?), and Willem Defoe are in this movie, yet I spotted NONE of them in the trailer. But I’m still very intrigued by this. It could be an incoherent, overly serious mess of CGI, but moments in the trailer seemed legitimately epic and impressive.

ALSO: I just realised that John Carter is the first live-action film by Wall-E and Finding Nemo director Andrew Stanton. Those were two of Pixar’s most visually dazzling films, so that kind of explains visual scope that we see here. I am even more hopeful now.

The Thing

Release Date: October 14

Monster movies are always in style, so it makes sense that they would reboot another franchise. This time, it’s The Thing, and it stars Mary Elizabeth Winstead (Scott Pilgrim vs. the World) and Joel Edgerton (Animal Kingdom). I’m not a big horror fan, but The Thing actually looks better than I expected. It certainly doesn’t appear to offer anything new, but the whole “who among us isn’t human?” premise is often entertaining. Winstead seems to be a capable leading lady here, and I’m always intrigued by Edgerton (though he didn’t have much to do in the trailer other than look concerned). I won’t be rushing out to see it, but The Thing looks like it could potentially be a cut above the usual horror fare.